the sacrifice

What a beautiful morning made even more so by some quiet time in the Word of God… even in Leviticus. If you’ve read the book you understand what I mean for it is filled with the regulations on how the Hebrews were to live, worship, and interact. The fact that God can reaffirm a vital truth to me in this old book just confirms that the Word is alive and that God is actively working through it!

The truth this morn? God chooses to work through people with a heart for him. He is not bound by their outward appearance, finances, or social status. How did I get that in Leviticus? To see the connection, we must first travel to Luke 2 and the time when Mary and Joseph took their newborn son, Jesus, to the temple…

“When the time of their purification according to the Law of Moses had been completed, Joseph and Mary took him to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord … and to offer a sacrifice in keeping with what is said in the Law of the Lord: ‘a pair of doves or 2 young pigeons.’” – Luke 2:22-24

Yes, this last part is a direct quote from Leviticus 12 but there is more in the verse that Luke didn’t add about the sacrifice a mother was to make following the birth of a child.

“If she cannot afford a lamb, she is to bring two doves or two young pigeons…” Leviticus 12:8

From comparing Luke 2 and Leviticus 12, I conclude Mary and Joseph were not wealthy or even comfortable financially or they would have bought a lamb for the sacrifice instead of the cheaper option. Maybe I read too much into Luke’s reference with no mention of a lamb… I just know I’m awed once again at God’s ways. When he chose Mary & Joseph to parent his only Son, God looked beyond what the world saw. In Mary, God saw a heart devoted to Him. In Joseph, he found a man of integrity who would teach his Son how to be a man. God saw their hearts and what they could be when they followed his ways.

When God calls people to follow him today to step out in leadership or service, he doesn’t look at their circumstances, status, or finances but at their hearts and what they can do when they seek him and are empowered by his Spirit.

Now, let’s take this personal… What is God calling us to do? What is it that keeps coming to mind… what is it that we are passionate about that we keep pushing aside because we feel inadequate or ill-equipped? Could it be our inadequacy is exactly why God is choosing us so that the glory is His and not ours? Something worth pondering…

Let me end with one last observation from Luke 2 that is beyond awesome… Maybe Mary and Joseph couldn’t afford a lamb to sacrifice for their newborn son… but what sweet irony that to the temple they brought THE Lamb of God who would grow up and give his life as the ultimate sacrificial Lamb! O, how my heart sings for joy at the workings of my God! From my heart pours praise for my sweet Jesus! God you are awesome! Lord, give me the courage to step out where you are calling me! Even when I feel overwhelmed by my short-comings, be my strength! Amen!sacrifice

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